Take your custom CAD files and generate sliced models for any resin 3D printer to create perfectly using the Lychee Slicer


Hey gang,

Tim here at Core Electronics, and today is a rundown on making custom slice files of any CAD model for any Resin 3D printer using the Lychee Slicer. So, you have a three-dimensional computer file and you want to 3D print it with a Resin printer. Before you can print your CAD model, you need to create a sliced file of that model, which the Resin 3D printer can understand, and that is where the slicing software comes in.

The free Lychee software is the software that I'm going to be utilizing here. It is a great and intuitive software to get you up and running creating unique Resin prints really, really fast. Everyone knows about ChittyBlox Slicer, and for good reason, it's a good slicer. But the Lychee Slicer has provided me with better tolerances, better size accuracy, a mesh repair feature set that no other slicer seems to have, and a more modern UI, and just many more other options. So this will be the focus of this video.

Also of consideration is that both these slicers have premium paid options and the Lychee Slicer is cheaper. However, I've not used or had a need to use either of those paid options. When it comes to creating sliced files for Resin 3D prints, the most obvious difference visually from filament 3D printing comes from the shape of the support structures. Due to the way the object is pulled out of the tank hanging upside down, and due to the fact that the UV light is able to cure a whole layer all at once, results in the creation of very long thin supports.

What is really happening here is when we're using the Resin Slicing softwares, is that they are producing a file for us which contains many, many hundreds, potentially thousands of black and white pictures, which when. Stacked on top of each other will represent the desired 3D model. As soon as you open up the application, for the first time, it's going to ask you what printer you are running the show with and present you a very long list to choose from.

Then it's a simple matter of choosing the one that you have. Then it will have the specifications like the print platform and layer height all sized up and done inside the software. It will also use this selection to accurately create a simulation mode where you can observe the print coming out of your Resin 3D printer tank.

If your printer is not listed, there is a simple wizard process to add it. The slicer also works with all the 3D file formats that you would expect it to like STL and OBJ.

So let's crack on and import a 3D model. Now you can create your own 3D models, guides in the description how to, or you can find CAD files free to download all over the World Wide Web. With your CAD file in hand, use the top down menus in the top left of the screen or click the import button or just simply click and drag your 3D file into the window to get your desired file into the center of the virtual build platform.

So with the model on screen it's time to talk about navigation. The navigation controls worth knowing right away are mouse right click and hold while moving the mouse which is going to rotate the build area, mouse wheel click and hold while moving the mouse which will scrub the view across, and mouse wheel scroll which will zoom in and out of the build area. You can also use the box in the top right of the window which you can click to choose a particular orientation.

With these controls you'll be able to see your model from all angles in the 3D virtual space. Lightchi andMost slicing software can be broken down into three distinct sections: arranging the model, preparing the supports, and exporting the sliced file. In Lightchi, these stages are prominently situated in the top middle section of the window and can be accessed at any time. They are labelled as layout, prepare, and export.

The first stage is the arrange stage, which allows you to select your model and place it wherever you want in the virtual build space. It's important to keep in mind that parts of your model outside of this virtual build area will not be printed, so make sure to keep your model inside this area. In this stage, you can also scale, copy, or mirror your selected model, and you can add multiple objects to a single print. By clicking on a particular model, the menu options on the left side of the screen will focus on that selected model, allowing you to make changes to it. A good general rule here is to orientate the model so that the edges you want the best final surface on face away from the build platform. This way, very few or no supports will end up on the face of the model. For example, you can rotate the model 90-degrees to take advantage of the LD002H taller Z axis.

Moving on to the prepare stage, the main goal here is to support overhangs and floating islands so that the model sticks to the build platform. At this point, you can perform several different processes, but it ultimately boils down to adding supports and rafts. When you're just starting off, I would recommend using the heavy support option and generating automatic supports. Adding supports can become an art, but starting with the automatic option is a good way to get familiar with the process. As for the raft, my preference is shape wall.

Both of these stages are important in the slicing process and will help ensure a successful print. Finally, in the export stage, you can save the sliced file in the desired format for your 3D printer. Combination will provide great adhesion to the build platform and is all you really need to do at this stage. I'll dive deeper into supports at the end of this video.

You can see that I also jumped between the layout and prepare stage so that way I could size the model correctly so that it and all the supports could fit inside the build area. Worth noting this stage will also let you hollow out your object. This will save overall material in exchange for a weaker final component. This is a more advanced technique as you must make sure to create relief holes so that a vacuum does not build up inside your hollowed model. This vacuum can distort prints, cause print failures or even worse FEP sheet failures as the vacuum tears holes into your FEP sheet.

The final step in this process is slicing and exporting the final model. You can get to this stage by clicking on the export button. This stage will also let you simulate the printing process showing the model coming out of a virtual representation of your printer's resin tank and provide a comparison for you to see what your model is going to look like next to a can and a banana. Both are surprisingly useful tools.

There are several different exporting options available to you. The CTB format is the type that most resin 3D-printers operate with. If you dive into the file it's going to look like a long list of black and white images with each one representing one layer of your model. Here you can also add anti-aliasing to your model. There are several levels of this which when applied correctly will make your final model smoother and more exquisite. Four times is a good starting amount.

The other export file options are great if you want to see your model with supports.And other CAD software like Fusion 360 or Blender.

So with everything set up, export that slice file as a CTB and save it to a USB stick just like the one I have here. Then plug that USB stick into your 3D printer, find it using the printer's UI, and start your 3D print. Now, the art of supports comes from the desire to minimize the marring from the support connection points. This marring you're going to see on the final component surface after they get removed. That is why, whenever possible, it's always best to orientate the good side of the model away from the build platform.

As you dive deeper into resin printing, you're going to gain a better feel for how much supports are required for certain overhangs and material mass. Then, you can start thinning the support connection points to the model, leaving smaller marks and minimizing the overall diameter of the supports. You can then also start lowering the density of those supports. The auto support is brilliant in the Lychee software, but you will eventually come across situations where it places supports in a peculiar location or in an area that you don't want to be marked by supports. Now, supports can be removed without much marring on the surface of the model, particularly when care is taken to remove them. So, a couple of stray supports on the pretty side of your model is not the end of the world.

The support controls in Lychee Slicer are really worth knowing and are as follows:

- Click on a single support and press the delete key to remove a single support.
- Click and drag on a single support while holding the alt key to drag the supports around, both the connecting location and how it's attaching to the build plate.
- Click and drag on a single support whileHolding the control and alt key to create super fine supports. These are very useful for manually supporting very small tiny features. In the options you can also decide whether the supports can be built on top of your model or all have to come from the build platform.

Whenever possible I attempt to support only from the build platform or better yet to use no supports at all and just build structures that don't require them. And here is the mask now. Once I printed it I took it off the build plate and completed it using the process described in the video Completing Your First Resin 3D Print, link to that down below. Later I gave it a quick prime coat, a couple of licks of paint and a gloss finish and I'm pretty happy with how it turned out. So with all the information you need to create custom sliced files like these here for Resin 3D Printing, until next time, stay cozy.


Please continue if you would like to leave feedback for any of these topics:

  • Website features/issues
  • Content errors/improvements
  • Missing products/categories
  • Product assignments to categories
  • Search results relevance

For all other inquiries (orders status, stock levels, etc), please contact our support team for quick assistance.

Note: click continue and a draft email will be opened to edit. If you don't have an email client on your device, then send a message via the chat icon on the bottom left of our website.

Makers love reviews as much as you do, please follow this link to review the products you have purchased.